Cameron McDade

Cameron spent some time looking for a suitable tank at the sizes he wanted. Having had an acrylic tank previously he wasn't keen to have one again.

"Although acrylic is great to work with and safer than glass I found that it was all too easy to scratch and a bugger to keep clean. Eventually I settled on a 4x3x2 glass tank that, although used was in immaculate condition and was pre drilled and fitted with a weir. As a bonus the tank came with optiwhite front and side panels a box section steel stand."


Having the tank in place Cameron next turned his attention to the rockwork and aquascaping.

"I really liked the almost 'bonsai' look of the rock work and decided that would try and emulate this style of aquascaping in this tank. This style could not easily be achieved with standard live rock pieces and would need a quantity of plate rock, particularly the table acropora rock that is often seen available dried in many shops. However I have seen many people suffer with bad and prolonged algae/slime problems in tanks where dried rock has been used, so I took the decision to either build my own rock from scratch or to buy live rock. I experimented with several pieces of DIY rock but was not really happy with the look of these. I also feel that despite the addition of rock salt to the mix which dissolves to leave a porous structure, these rocks would have had limited filtration capacity."

"So one very cold snowy day early December we set off to hand pick suitable rock.  I came away with 19 kilos of plate rock and 10 kilos of their Totoka rock. Next day saw the building of the structure itself. Equipped with cable ties, 10mm acrylic rod, Milliput, Epo Putty, a 12mm drill bit and plenty of towels myself and my wife Tracy set about the build.

It was extremely difficult to get the rock seated in a good place so that it could be drilled, tied and rodded together. Once this had finally been achieved the structure was placed in the tank and slowly over a number of days the joints are to be filled with Epo Putty or Milliput to add strength.

What you see here is the structure almost complete but with a few ties still holding things together whilst more putty is put in place.

I can highly recommend Epo Putty if you can get it, it is easier to work with and less problematic than Milliput and has the bonus of drying quicker as well as being completely reef safe."

A big thanks to Cameron for allowing us to show off his tank. We eagerly await updates and look forward to watching this tank develop. We are very pleased that Epo Putty proved to be a useful product in engineering this fantastic aquascape. Cameron has allowed some lovely space to add corals and we are sure you agree that this tank will mature into being a fabulous example of a reef aquarium.

Please accept our gift of a pack of Epo Putty Cameron!